We’re not trying to be your social engagements secretary, but if you’re looking for a pleasant way to spend a summer eve, here’s one: Shakespeare in Clark Park, from now through August 3rd. “As You Like It” is the play, and verdant and vital Clark Park is the site. One of the lovely things about outdoor theater is that there is no fussy theater district to deal with or pricey pre-theater prix fixe menus. No, indeed! With this kind of event, you can be as casual as you want to be, and show up with nothing more than a picnic blanket, some chairs, if you are fancy like that, and some awesome food to munch on while you take in all the culture. So, without further ado, here’s what we might go for as our take-out “pre-theater” meal.
• Beloved Koch’s Deli is but a few blocks away, and will satisfy the most ardent meat-eaters in the audience. The fare isn’t exactly refined, but oh my goodness does it taste good. They often give out samples of cold cuts or cheeses for those waiting in line, so you can find out what you’re getting into before ordering your sandwich. We haven’t been to Koch’s in a while, because of that whole trying-to-be-heart-healthy thing, but if you’re going to indulge, we should admit that we think about the “Lou Koch Special,” which involves lofty layers of roast beef, turkey, and chopped liver more than we’d like to say.
• Gojjo is a hop, skip, and a jump away from the park, and a good bet if Ethiopian food sounds just right. Some might call it too messy for take-out, but we don’t see any need to be prim about this whole affair! The fact is, that besides being thoroughly toothsome, Ethiopian is good for sharing, and we would be happy as a clam digging into one of the combination plates from Gojjo, especially if one of the dishes was the flavorful okra. Plus doesn’t it seem fittingly Shakespearean to eat with one’s hands?
• Finally, before we ever sunk our teeth into a banh mi, we were completely obsessed with the tofu hoagies at Fu-Wah Mini Market, which is right up the street on Baltimore and 47th. The fried tofu comes on a crispy hoagie roll and is topped with a generous dose of sriracha sauce, as well as a smattering of jalapeños. It is truly the stuff of dreams.
More info on the production is available at Shakespeare in Clark Park.